Architected Porosity

High-performance building elements are often complex multi-material assemblies that are difficult to manufacture and recycle. However, the novel field of foam 3D printing (F3DP) in construction allows to combine the advantages of differentiated material properties with the simplicity of monolithic building systems. This research investigates applications for innovative architectural elements that are lightweight, thermo-structural efficient, and exploring new material expressions for a future sustainable building culture.

Within the framework of an Innosuisse collaboration (Grant number 41905.1 IP-EE), innovative mineral foams made from industrial waste by ETH spinoff FenX AG are used and developed for F3DP . Different robotic printing systems and computational toolpath strategies are evaluated. The resulting prototypes demonstrate the potential of F3DP in various scales and combinations with other conventional construction materials. This research is supported by the ETH Research Commission (Grant number ETH-01 19-2) and the NCCR Digital Fabrication (Grant number 51NF40-141853).

Prototype showing F3DP used for a lightweight facade shading panel (with Dinorah Martinez Schulte). Patrick Bedarf | dbt
Study of a compression-only arched beam (with Dr. Cristián Calvo Barentin). Patrick Bedarf | dbt
FoamWork prototype
The FoamWork slab demonstrating F3DP for stay-in-place or temporary recyclable formwork. Patrick Bedarf | dbt
Airlements is a prototype for monolithic, lightweight, and insulated wall construction made by F3DP. Patrick Bedarf | dbt